DOVER-FOXCROFT, Maine — One-stop shopping is now offered at the town’s new home on Morton Avenue.
Residents can license their vehicle, pay their water bill, take an adult education course, and enroll their child in private day care at the facility, which opened for business last week.
When the former Morton Avenue Elementary School was relocated into new quarters last year, residents accepted the former school and voted to move the town offices from the historic Central Hall into the more modern building. Inmates in the trades program at Charleston Correctional Facility spent several hundred hours helping local contractors and volunteers renovate and retrofit the building into an office complex.
“Everybody is really happy with this facility,” Town Manager Jack Clukey told selectmen Monday.
Town officials plan to place Central Hall, which was appraised at $135,000, up for sale. Selectmen have discussed placing restrictions on the property that include a move to prohibit the building from being torn down. The building has a full basement, a first floor, a second-floor gymnasium and a balcony.
Until the building is placed on the market, town officials are allowing the Living Word Food Cupboard use of the first floor. The cupboard, which will pay the utilities, expects to relocate from its Lincoln Street quarters to Central Hall in early January.
Clukey said the town is working with the Dover-Foxcroft Historical Society to investigate having the area around Central Hall designated a historic district since there are many historic buildings in that region.
Christi Mitchell, architectural historian for the Maine Historic Preservation Commission, said such a designation has benefits.
“This a way of getting a large group of properties listed in the National Register [of Historic Places] altogether and it’s a way of making them eligible for grants if they are owned by nonprofit[s] or municipalities,” Mitchell said Tuesday.
A historic district is also a way of making a large group of properties eligible for rehabilitation tax credits, but only for commercial, depreciable properties within the district, according to Mitchell. In addition, she said there is a limited amount of protection for a historic district from the adverse effects of any federally funded, licensed or permitted project.